In the heat of the night
In the heat of the day
When I close my eyes
When I look your way
When I meet the fear that lies inside
When I hear you say
In the heat of the moment
Say, say, say

Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Come a time
Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Some say prayers
Some say prayers
I say mine

In the light of the fact
On the lone and level
Sand stretch far away
In the heat of the action
In the settled dust
Hold hold and sway
In the meeting of mined
Down in the streets of shame
In the betting of names on gold to rust
In the land of the blind
Be...king, king, king, king

Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Come a time
Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Some say prayers
Some say prayers
I say mine

Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Some say prayers
Some say prayers
I say mine

In the heat of the night
In the heat of the day
When I close my eyes
When I look your way
When I meet the fear that lies inside
When I hear you say
In the heat of the moment
Say, say, say

Some day, some day, some day - Dominion
Some say prayers
Some say prayers
I say mine
I say mine
I say mine

We serve an old man in a dry season
A lighthouse keeper in the desert sun
Dreamers of sleepers and white treason
We dream of treason and the history of the gun
There's a lighthouse in the middle of Prussia
A white house in a red square
I'm living in films for the sake of russia
A Kino Runner for the DDR
And the fifty-two daughters of the revolution
Turn the gold to chrome
Gift...nothing to lose
Stuck inside of Memphis with the mobile home, sing:

Mother Russia
Mother Russia
Mother Russia rain down down down
Mother Russia
Mother Russia
Mother Russia rain down


Lyrics submitted by permagne

Dominion/Mother Russia song meanings
Add your thoughts

9 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +1
    General CommentIn Soviet Russia Treason dreams YOU!
    veluetpecheon March 14, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentDominion

    "Some day...some day everything you ever needed is just gonna fall out of the sky" - introducton to the song by Eldritch, Reading Festival, August 1991

    "In the heat of the night"

    ...is a 1967 film directed by Norman Jewison and starring Rod Steiger and Sidney Poitier. Though the film's themes are not directly related to Dominion's subject matter, it seems likely that Eldritch had the film in mind when writing this line.

    "On the lone and level/ Sand stretch far away"

    This is a quotation from Percy Bysshe Shelley's (1792-1822) sonnet Ozymandias . Ozymandias recounts the tale of a "traveller from an ancient land" who encounters the remains of a "colossal wreck". Ironically, all that remains is a pedestal with the words "My name is Ozymandias, king of /… on my works ye mighty and despair!". Shelley's theme is Eldritch's: the transient, destructive nature of power. "I'm not a fan of Shelley, but Ozymandias is a powerful and ever-topical image: seemed a shame to waste it" - Eldritch, [C10]

    Just in case anybody needed a helping hand with this one, a heavily re-mixed version of Dominion was entitled Ozymandias and included on the limited edition box-set 12" and cassette of Dominion.

    The "lone and level" quote also appears in SOF's song This Corrosion , although in a modified form.

    "In the meeting of mined"

    The more obvious spelling is "mind' (also "hold hold and sway" - one can hold and sway a mind), so why "mined'? The "mined' may be those who are the victims of the powerful, those whose talents are extracted and used for other's enrichment; those who are the subjects of the Dominion. The "meeting of the mined' could be likened to a political rally where the powerful hold and sway the mined's minds.

    "Streets of shame"

    The UK's newspapers used to have their headquarters in Fleet Street, London. This became known as the "Street of Shame", so this might be a dig at the media in general and their role in subjugating the public. Alternatively, it could be a reference to the Reeperbahn.

    "In the betting of names on gold to rust"

    "Gold to rust" is obviously the corrosion of an ideal (similar to Mother Russia's "Gold to chrome"). I am not sure what "betting of names" refers to. A best guess is that it refers to Lloyds' Names: Lloyds Register of Shipping is the world's oldest insurance company, and works by using rich individuals to underwrite it - the Names. They each sign over some part of their huge wealth to the company, in return for a share in the huge profits. Gold doesn't rust, and they feel safe - their bets are certain. Of course, the irony is that they choose to overlook the fact that if payouts need to be made to claimants, they also have a share in the losses.

    "In the land of the blind/Be...king, king, king, king"

    There's a common saying "in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king". This is not necessarily intended as a positive statement: H.G. Wells wrote a short story "In the Country of the Blind". In this, the sighted man is anything but king - he's unwanted, useless, and treated with total indifference by the blind inhabitants. In the end he goes back where he came from, his perceived advantage having proved to be a liability. All of which gives the line a wonderful twist.




    Mother Russia

    "We serve an old man in a dry season"

    This is a reference to T S Eliot's Gerontion, the opening line of which is "Here I am, an old man in a dry month", and the closing line "Thoughts of a dry brain in a dry season". The "old man" in Mother Russia's case being ex-President of the United States and B-Movie star Ronald Reagan. Rotten films, rotten Presidency.


    "sleepers"

    Cold War Soviet agents who assimilated themselves into Western communities, ready to perform heroic acts of insurgency when the call came from the Motherland. In reality, the concept of sleepers was probably more the result of Cold War paranoia than an attempt by the USSR to subvert the American dream, hence "dreamers of sleepers".

    "There's a lighthouse in the middle of Prussia"

    Prussia was an independent state prior to the (original) unification of Germany. The capital of Prussia was Berlin. In wall-era Berlin, the East Berlin skyline was (and still is) dominated by a TV tower, the Fernsehturm , which was built as a visible symbol of Communist technical prowess (the use of a TV tower for this propaganda purpose is particularly ironic) in direct competition to West Berlin which was a shop window for Capitalism (on the Kurfurstendamm literally so). Hence Berlin is Europe in microcosm, prostituted in a propaganda war by the two superpowers (see Eldritch quote, 'Mother Russia rain down' below). More acutely, Berlin sums up the Mutually Assured Destruction thesis of the Cold War: neither side could launch a nuclear strike on Berlin without destroying one of their own major cities at the same time.

    "A white house in a red square"

    The White House in Washington DC is the official residence of The President of the United States. Political power in Moscow is concentrated around Red Square; apart from the Kremlin, there is also a White House close to Red Square. The Moscow White House used to house the assembly of the Russian Federation.

    "A Kino Runner for the DDR"

    Kino is the German for film / cinema. Keno is an American game similar to that cultural icon of the UK, Bingo (it doesn't sound as intellectually demanding, though - someone else checks the numbers for you...). A Keno Runner is a person who moves between tables collecting bets ("like a financial Blade Runner for the polyester masses of the mid-west" - Edward Bax). DDR is Deutsche Demokratische Republik, viz. East Germany.

    "the fifty-two daughters of the revolution"

    There is an American organisation called The Daughters of the Revolution which promotes the American way in all its glory (The Sisters' 1991 Washington gig was at the Daughters of the Revolution Hall in the shadow of the White House). Why there are specfically 52 daughters is unclear: it might refer to Reagan's second term being the 52nd American presidential term, also there are 52 playing cards which would fit in with the gambling motif mentioned above.



    A special feature: Why 52?

    remember "turn the gold to chrome"?

    The conversion of Gold to Chrome represents a debasement of an ideal. Both the USA and the USSR were founded on high ideals, which were inevitably ruined and abused by human nature. Eldritch occasionally uses chrome in reference to cars ("there will always be people whose only worry is where the next layer of chrome will come from for their car"), so in this case the Gold to Chrome would seem represent the implementation of the American idea of freedom (Gold) as the ability to own a motor car (Chrome). The car, of course, is the ultimate capitalist status symbol: a massively dangerous beast that fucks up the planet, but underpins the world economy. Andrew Eldritch currently drives a Dodge Viper.

    Gold is also emblematic of Russia, and the wealth left over from the monarchy after the Bolshevik Revolution: years later Russia would be forced to change to a cheap, crass, chrome-plated capitalist styled economy.

    "Gift"

    Gift is the German for poison, and a deeply fabulous spaghetti-industrial album by The Sisterhood .

    "Stuck inside of Memphis with the mobile home"

    This is a pun on a Bob Dylan song Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again. Relaxed gaming laws in Tennessee mean that Memphis is a Mecca for Keno junkies. Memphis is also the birthplace of Blues, Rock & Roll and Elvis Presley. More than enough for it to deserve the Chernobyl treatment.

    "Mother Russia rain down"

    Mother Russia was inspired by the Chernobyl disaster in 1986. Over to Mr. Eldritch:

    "I made the mistake of getting caught in central Europe when Chernobyl started sprinkling it's residue over the land. It's [Dominion/Mother Russia] part of my hate/hate relationship with America. I just had the idea of all them huddled in their mobile homes while Mother Russia rained down on them. They deserve it. I suppose the song is really about the prostitution of Europe by the Americans." [ATF]


    Source:
    geocities.com/SunsetStrip/Club/1217/
    laurelinwyntreon October 16, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI like how they shout "Dominion!".. it's very much like a political chant leading people to war.
    croftyon February 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAwesome song...
    HearMeWhisperon August 08, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentCold War nostalgia perfection.

    Lord knows what it mean, but it evokes the (un)comfortable, totalitarian certainties of the cold war - the sense of brooding empires stood in opposition, and the rest of us as pawns.
    How I miss it.
    SuitBoyon January 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentlaurelinwyntre... you rock!

    all entries should be this thorough
    thefukkistuppiston February 16, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"Just in case anybody needed a helping hand with this one, a heavily re-mixed version of Dominion was entitled Ozymandias and included on the limited edition box-set 12" and cassette of Dominion."

    Not to dispute the Shelley reference here, but to add an extra tidbit, the track Ozymandias which follows on from Dominion on the 12" is Dominion backwards played backwards with some extra Sax on it. The almost remarkable thing about playing Dominion backwards is that it one section sounds a bit like someone is saying "ozymandias", it's not clear enough that this coincidence would ever have been noticed had the Shelley reference not been present in the original song, but this surely the reason for the title of this track.
    grembleon February 23, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentCould this be about The Mission/Hussey? The first verses sung to Hussey?

    "In the land of the blind
    Be...king, king, king, king "

    Andrew saying that Wayne Hussey can be king while he (Andrew) is not making music.

    This would also put the two parts of the song in great perspective: Mother Russia is the losing side in the superpower race. The race between Eldritch and Hussey. And this would make the Ozymandias reference a future prediction for Hussey.
    GhostEchoon February 26, 2009   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningI'm pretty certain that I read that Eldritch said that Mother Russia was about how West Berlin should be given to the Soviets. These lines really reinforce the idea that it's about Berlin, imo:

    "There's a lighthouse in the middle of Prussia
    A white house in a red square"

    On East German maps, West Berlin was left as blank white space, therefore, the White House is both a real thing and a metaphor. In the metaphorical interpretation, it's saying that there's a little piece of America in the middle of what is essentially the USSR.

    As for the lighthouse - if it's in the middle of Prussia it's safe again to assume it's Berlin.
    hdoddson May 06, 2013   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain